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The energy and monetary implications of the ‘24/7’ ‘always on’ society

journal contribution
posted on 16.12.2008 by Dennis Loveday, Tracy Bhamra, Tang Tang, Victoria Haines, M.J. Holmes, R.J. Green
This paper reviews the trends in society, technology and energy demand of the past 30 years, together with the growth of the ‘on-demand’ culture. The ‘24/7’ or ‘always on’ society can be defined as one where people demand—and generally receive—what they want ‘now’. It has grown up in parallel with developments in information technology, which have produced the services needed to meet that demand. Larger numbers of appliances, resulting from greater affluence and disposable income, have increased energy use, despite energy efficiencies in other areas. While monetary factors suggest that changes brought about by the 24/7 society will generally be self-correcting at the macro-economic level, there will nevertheless be effects for individuals, such as potentially severe impacts on the fuel poor as electricity prices rise. We conclude with a view of future directions. As the 24/7 culture continues to grow, there is scope for designers and for information technology to manage and reduce energy consumption. This includes buildings, their services systems, and the mix of new technologies that will be deployed over the next 20 years or so, including the possibilities for data exchange and control at the interface between energy suppliers and consumers, coupled with greater understanding of the behaviour of the consumers themselves.

History

School

  • Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

Citation

LOVEDAY, D.L. ... et al, 2008. The energy and monetary implications of the ‘24/7’ ‘always on’ society. Energy Policy, 36 (12), pp. 4639–4645

Publisher

Elsevier (© Queen’s Printer and Controller of HMSO).

Version

NA (Not Applicable or Unknown)

Publication date

2008

Notes

This article is Restricted Access. It was published in the journal, Energy Policy, and the definitive version is available at: www.elsevier.com/locate/enpol

ISSN

0301-4215

Language

en

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